McCain: U.S. must play 'far more active role' in fight against ISIL

U.S. Sen. John McCain (R-AZ)
U.S. Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) | Contributed photo
The Iraqi military has rolled through Islamic State militant fighters in Ramadi, liberating one of Iraq’s major cities from ISIL control.

While the government compound in central Ramadi has been taken back, the fight is still ongoing on the outskirts of the city. U.S. Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said on Monday that the liberation of Ramadi represents a landmark achievement in the fight against Islamic State extremists, but that the job is far from over.

“No one should understate how much work remains and how much more difficult that work will be than liberating Ramadi,” McCain said. “The black flags of ISIL still fly over Mosul, Raqqa and other key parts of Iraq and Syria.”

McCain said recent terrorist attacks in California, Paris, Beirut and Ankara, Turkey, show that the Islamic threat remains as much of a threat as ever. The senator criticized President Obama's nuanced approach to dealing with ISIL, calling on the president to take a harder line in dealing with the extremist militant group.

“If our goal truly is to destroy ISIL in the near future, rather than kick the can down the road for others to deal with, the United States must play a far more active role than we are now, especially in supporting local Sunni Arab forces to take the fight to ISIL themselves,” McCain said.

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